Thanks: Michael Cooley

I’m compelled to write a couple lines about the biggest inspiration on my system design.

Studioworks founder Michael Cooley is a rare engineering & design talent, and the depth of his design proficiency connects disciplines usually disparate. Let me get out my bullet points:

  • Facility-wide broadcast system design, classic architecture, artistic & ergonomic industrial design like workspaces & furniture, and electronic device design down to the component level. I know many outstanding designers in these different fields, and many with multi-disciplinary abilities, but Cooley is one-of-a-kind.
  • He can create architectural drawings for enormous facilities from the ground up.  As in “ready to be rubber-stamped by an architect and delivered to the construction company.”
  • He designs furniture. He designs co-located studios with thousands & thousands of audio, video, & data interconnects. Does the system need some electronic device that doesn’t exist yet? Well, get me my soldering iron, let’s design (& build) one of those, dontcha know.
  • He’s not an “isolated in a pristine office” designer, though. He’s up on the roof inspecting an antenna system, or crawling behind a studio console to check the wiring configuration, or drawing diagrams on a whiteboard in a conference room with clients.

He also restores old airplanes and has been a private pilot since age 14 (or some ridiculously young age).


Studioworks (later Studioworks Broadcast Design Group) was Michael’s way to kill time designing some of the most complex multiple-station broadcast communication centers in the country in order to pay for his airplanes.

Typical projects lasted several months. Here’s a few of the companies that contracted Studioworks-created broadcast facilities:

Entercom Communications • Intel Corporation, IETC • Ackerley Communications/New Century Media • 
Fisher Communications/Fisher Broadcast Company • Westwood One/Metro Networks • Rumblefish Records

Many great adventures over the years as a partner in Studioworks Broadcast Design Group, along with Wayne Anderson, David Hess, Gregg Mizuno and of course, Cooley. Thanks, Mike, I owe you a white russian.

Additional Credit: Wayne Anderson: A deadpan master of linear geometry: When you see the intricate bundles of thousands of cable interconnects that look like modern sculpture, you are witnessing Wayne’s unique skill.